In schomer, when the leves spryng,
The bloschems on every bowe,
So merey doyt the berdys syng
Yn wodys merey now.
Herkens, god yemen,
Comley, corteysse, and god,
On of the best that yever bar bou,
Hes name was Roben Hode.
Roben Hood was the yemans name,
That was boyt corteys and fre;
For the loffe of owr ladey,
All wemen werschep he.
Bot as the god yemen stod on a day,
Among hes mery maney,
He was war of a prowd potter,
Cam dryfyng owyr the ley.
“Yonder comet a prod potter,” seyde Roben,
“That long hayt hantyd this wey;
He was never so corteys a man
On peney of pawage to pay.”
“Y met hem bot at Wentbreg,” seyde Lytyll John,
“And therfor yeffell mot he the,
Seche thre strokes he me gafe,
Yet they cleffe by my seydys.
“Y ley forty shillings,” seyde Lytyll John,
“To pay het thes same day,
Ther ys nat a man arnong hus all
A wed schall make hem ley.”
“Her ys forty shillings,” seyde Roben,
“Mor, and thow dar say,
That y schall make that prowde potter,
A wed to me schall he ley.”
Ther thes money they leyde,
They toke bot a yeman to kepe;
Roben befor the potter he breyde,
And bad hem stond stell.
Handys apon hes horse he leyde,
And bad the potter stonde foll stell;
The potter schorteley to hem seyde,
“Felow, what ys they well?”
“All thes thre yer, and mor, potter,” he seyde,
“Thow hast hantyd thes wey,
Yet wer tow never so cortys a man
One peney of pauage to pay.”
“What ys they name,” seyde the potter,
“For pauage thow ask of me?”
“Roben Hod ys mey name,
A wed schall thow leffe me.”
“Well well y non leffe,” seyde the potter,
“Nor pavag well y non pay;
Away they honde fro mey horse,
Y well the tene eyls, be me fay.”
The potter to hes cart he went,
He was not to seke;
A god to-hande staffe therowt he hent,
Befor Roben he lepe.
Roben howt with a swerd bent,
A bokeler en hes honde [therto];
The potter to Roben he went,
And seyde, “Felow, let mey horse go.”
Togeder then went thes two yemen,
Het was a god seyt to se;
Therof low Robyn hes men,
Ther they stod onder a tre.
Leytell John to hes felowhes seyde,
“Yend potter welle steffeley stonde:”
The potter, with an acward stroke,
Smot the bokeler owt of hes honde;
And ar Roben meyt get hem agen
Hes bokeler at hes fette,
The potter yn the neke hem toke,
To the gronde sone he yede.
That saw Roben hes men,
As they stode ender a bow;
“Let us helpe owr master,” seyed Lytell John,
“Yonder potter els well hem sclo.”
Thes yemen went with a breyde,
To ther master they cam.
Leytell John to hes master seyde,
“He haet the wager won?
“Schall y haff yowr forty shillings,” seyde Lytel John,
“Or ye, master, schall haffe myne?”
“Yeff they wer a hundred,” seyde Roben,
“Y feythe, they ben all theyne.”
“Het ys fol leytell cortesey,” seyde the potter,
“As y haffe harde weyse men saye,
Yeff a por yeman com drywyng ower the wey,
To let hem of hes gorney.”
“Be mey trowet, thow seys soyt,” seyde Roben,
“Thow seys god yemenrey;
And thow dreyffe forthe yevery day,
Thow schalt never be let for me.
“Y well prey the, god potter,
A felischepe well thow haffe?
Geffe me they clothyng, and thow schalt hafe myne;
Y well go to Notynggam.”
“Y grant therto,” seyde the potter,
“Thow schalt feynde me a felow gode;
But thow can sell mey pottes well,
Come ayen as thow yode.”
“Nay, be mey trowt,” seyde Roben,
“And then y bescro mey hede
Yeffe y bryng eney pottes ayen,
And eney weyffe well hem chepe.”
Than spake Leytell John,
And all hes felowhes heynd,
“Master, be well war of the screffe of Notynggam,
For he ys leytell howr frende.”
“Heyt war howte,” seyde Roben,
“Felowhes, let me alone;
Thorow the helpe of howr ladey,
To Notynggam well y gon.”
Robyn went to Notynggam,
Thes pottes for to sell;
The potter abode with Robens men,
Ther he fered not eylle.
Tho Roben droffe on hes wey,
So merey ower the londe:
Heres mor and affter ys to saye,
The best ys beheynde.
[THE SECOND FIT.]
When Roben cam to Netynggam,
The soyt yef y scholde saye,
He set op hes horse anon,
And gaffe hem hotys and haye.
Yn the medys of the towne,
Ther he schowed hes war;
“Pottys! pottys!” he gan crey foll sone,
“Haffe hansell for the mar.”
Foll effen agenest the screffeys gate
Schowed he hes chaffar;
Weyffes and wedowes abowt hem drow,
And chepyd fast of hes war.
Yet, “Pottys, gret chepe!” creyed Robyn,
“Y loffe yeffell thes to stonde;”
And all that saw hem sell,
Seyde he had be no potter long.
The pottys that wer werthe pens feyffe,
He sold tham for pens thre;
Preveley seyde man and weyffe,
“Ywnder potter schall never the.”
Thos Roben solde foll fast,
Tell he had pottys bot feyffe;
On he hem toke of his car,
And sende hem to the screffeys weyffe.
Therof sche was foll fayne,
“Gramarsey, sir,” than seyde sche;
“When ye com to thes contre ayen,
Y schall bey of they pottys, so mot y the.”
“Ye schall haffe of the best,” seyde Roben,
And swar be the treneyte;
Foll corteysley she gan hem call,
“Com deyne with the screfe and me.”
“Godamarsey,” seyde Roben,
“Yowr bedyng schalle be doyn;”
A mayden yn the pottys gan ber,
Roben and the screffe weyffe folowed anon.
Whan Roben ynto the hall cam,
The screffe sone he met;
The potter cowed of corteysey,
And sone the screffe he gret.
“Loketh what thes potter hayt geffe yow and me;
Feyffe pottys smalle and grete!”
“He ys fol wellcom, seyd the screffe,
“Let os was, and go to mete.”
As they sat at her methe,
With a nobell cher,
Two of the screffes men gan speke
Off a gret wager,
Was made the thother daye,
Off a schotyng was god and feyne,
Off forty shillings, the soyt to saye,
Who scholde thes wager wen.
Styll than sat thes prowde po,
Thos than thowt he;
“As y am a trow Cerstyn man,
Thes schotyng well y se.”
Whan they had fared of the best,
With bred and ale and weyne,
To the bottys they made them prest,
With bowes and boltys full feyne.
The screffes men schot foll fast,
As archares that weren godde;
Ther cam non ner ney the marke
Bey halfe a god archares bowe.
Stell then stod the prowde potter,
Thos than seyde he;
“And y had a bow, be the rode,
On schot scholde yow se.”
“Thow schall haffe a bow,” seyde the screffe,
“The best that thow well cheys of thre;
Thou semyst a stalward and a stronge,
Asay schall thow be.”
The screffe commandyd a yeman that stod hem bey
Affter bowhes to wende;
The best bow that the yeman browthe
Roben set on a stryng.
“Now schall y wet and thow be god,
And polle het op to they ner;”
“So god me helpe,” seyde the prowde potter,
“Thys ys bot rygzt weke ger.”
To a quequer Roben went,
A god bolt owthe he toke;
So ney on to the marke he went,
He fayled not a fothe.
All they schot abowthe agen,
The screffes men and he;
Off the marke he welde not fayle,
He cleffed the preke on thre.
The screffes men thowt gret schame,
The potter the mastry wan;
The screffe lowe and made god game,
And seyde, “Potter, thow art a man;
Thow art worthey to ber a bowe,
Yn what plas that thow gang.”
“Yn mey cart y haffe a bowe,
Forsoyt,” he seyde, “and that a godde;
Yn mey cart ys the bow
That I had of Robyn Hode.”
“Knowest thow Robyn Hode?” seyde the screffe,
“Potter, y prey the tell thou me;”
“A hundred torne y haffe schot with hem,
Under hes tortyll tree.”
“Y had lever nar a hundred ponde,” seyde the screffe,
And swar be the trenite,
[“Y had lever nar a hundred ponde,” he seyde,]
“That the fals owtelawe stod be me.
“And ye well do afftyr mey red,” seyde the potter,
“And boldeley go with me,
And to morow, or we het bred,
Roben Hode wel we se.”
“Y well queyt the,” kod the screffe,
And swer be god of meythe;
Schetyng thay left, and hom they went,
Her scoper was redey deythe.
Upon the morow, when het was day,
He boskyd hem forthe to reyde;
The potter hes carte forthe gan ray,
And wolde not [be] leffe beheynde.
He toke leffe of the screffys wyffe,
And thankyd her of all thyng:
“Dam, for mey loffe, and ye well thys wer,
Y geffe yow her a golde ryng.”
“Gramarsey,” seyde the weyffe,
“Sir, god eylde het the;”
The screffes hart was never so leythe,
The feyr forest to se.
And when he cam ynto the foreyst,
Yonder the leffes grene,
Berdys ther sange on bowhes prest,
Het was gret joy to sene.
“Her het ys mercy to be,” seyde Roben,
“For a man that had hawt to spende;
Be mey horne we schall awet
Yeff Roben Hode be ner hande.”
Roben set hes horne to hes mowthe,
And blow a blast that was full god,
That herde hes men that ther stode,
Fer downe yn the wodde;
“I her mey master,” seyde Leytell John;
They ran as thay wer wode.
Whan thay to thar master cam,
Leytell John wold not spar;
“Master, how haffe yow far yn Notynggam?
How haffe yow solde yowr war?”
“Ye, be mey trowthe, Leytyll John,
Loke thow take no car;
Y haffe browt the screffe of Notynggam,
For all howr chaffar.”
“He ys foll wellcom,” seyde Lytyll John,
“Thes tydyng ys foll godde;”
The screffe had lever nar a hundred ponde
[He had never sene Roben Hode.]
“Had I west that beforen,
At Notynggam when we wer,
Thow scholde not com yn feyr forest
Of all thes thowsande eyr.”
“That wot y well,” seyde Roben,
“Y thanke god that ye be her;
Therfor schall ye leffe yowr horse with hos,
And all your hother ger.”
“That fend I godys forbode,” kod the screffe,
“So to lese mey godde;”
“Hether ye cam on horse foll hey,
And hom schall ye go on fote;
And gret well they weyffe at home,
The woman ys foll godde.
“Y schall her sende a wheyt palffrey,
Het hambellet as the weynde;
Ner for the loffe of yowr weyffe,
Off mor sorow scholde yow seyng.”
Thes parted Robyn Hode and the screffe,
To Notynggam he toke the waye;
Hes weyffe feyr welcomed hem hom,
And to hem gan sche saye:
“Seyr, how haffe yow fared yn grene foreyst?
Haffe ye browt Roben hom?”
“Dam, the deyell spede him, bothe bodey and bon,
Y haffe hade a foll grete skorne.
“Of all the god that y haffe lade to grene wod,
He hayt take het fro me,
All bot this feyr palffrey,
That he hayt sende to the.”
With that sche toke op a lowde lawhyng,
And swhar be hem that deyed on tre,
“Now haffe yow payed for all the pottys
That Roben gaffe to me.
“Now ye be corn hom to Notynggam,
Ye schall haffe god ynowe;”
Now speke we of Roben Hode,
And of the pottyr onder the grene bowhe.
“Potter, what was they pottys worthe
To Notynggam that y ledde with me?”
“They wer worth two nobellys,” seyd he,
“So mot y treyffe or the;
So cowde y had for tham,
And y had ther be.”
“Thow schalt hafe ten ponde,” seyde Roben,
“Of money feyr and fre;
And yever whan thou comest to grene wod,
Wellcom, potter to me.”
Thes partyd Robyn, the screffe, and the potter,
Ondernethe the grene-wod tre;
God haffe mersey on Robyn Hodys solle,
And saffe all god yemanrey!



 

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